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Anonymous asked in Family & RelationshipsMarriage & Divorce · 1 decade ago

Is there any condition where you would ever consider a "cheating" partner/spouse "forgivable"?

As far as I know, cheating is one of the most hurtful thing a loved-one can do. Some believe that "Once a cheater, always a cheater."

But I do know people (mostly women, but some men too) who forgave their spouse for cheating, or at least, stayed with them.

Some of these cheaters never cheated again, while a few just keep on cheating (and keep being forgiven).

Your thought on this?


I said "one of the most hurtful things", so it's not necessarily the worst or the most hurtful.

For all I know, your partner can abuse you, lock you up, rape you, kill you, etc... and they're all just as bad, if not worse.

And there's probably a list of other more hurtful things.

Update 2:

Sammy, how refreshing! So you finally honoured me with an answer instead of just a star.

My opinion?

Well, I've only been cheated once, and she didn't ask for forgiveness. I thought I was being the best spouse I could, but apparently that wasn't enough (whether financially? physically? romantically? I don't know).

I would've given her a second chance, but she didn't want it. What's a man to do?

A friend of mine, however, had her husband accused her of cheating and left the house to be with his ex. She, too, would probably give this s.o.b. a second chance, but he didn't ask for it. What's a girl to do?

Update 3:


I totally understand.

I kinda have this type of relationship too (this "someone you've known for years and is always in your mind though you both have relationships with others"). And just like what you wrote, we both failed those relationships so far.

Update 4:


how many hours do I spend worrying?

In my case, None.

I trusted her completely.

She betrayed that.

38 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    My husband's emotional involvement with another person would be devastating to me. I would feel very threatened if I felt he was sharing this kind of emotional intimacy with someone else. It wouldn't be so much a question of "forgiving" him - I understand that sometimes it happens that one meets a person and falls in love, regardless of the current marital situation - but I just don't know if our relationship would survive such a breach of intimacy.

    I would be much less threatened or concerned with a predominantly sexual affair, as long as it was a one-off thing and not an everyday occurrence. Generally speaking, I trust his judgment (as well as my own), and I feel we could talk through something like that in a reasonable manner. We have discussed our feelings about infidelity several times; both of us seem to hold a similar view of what our deal-breakers are - and in and of itself, having sex with someone else is not an automatic deal-breaker. There has to be more to it for it to become a serious issue.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I do not believe cheating is the worst or most hurtful thing a spouse can do.

    I can say that I understand some cheating situations. I don't know if that means I would forgive and stay w/ the person or not.

    I have always left a cheater when they cheated in the past, but those were boyfriends and the relationship was bad anyway, so I was already on my way out.

    I don't believe once a cheater always a cheater.

    I know there are some situations regarding cheating that are absolute deal breakers such as cheating while I am pregnant, with a friend, with a family member, etc...

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  • Johnny
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    No marriage is perfect and there are alot of spouses out there who treat the other spouse like garbage, drive them away by their actions and what is said, and don't allow the spouses to be their own person. It takes a big person to admit when they were wrong and alot of the spouses who have been cheated on realize they drove the offending person into the arms of another. Cheating isn't scientific...its primal, sexual, caring, loving and whatever other adjectives a marriage describes oftentimes. I'm not saying it isn't wrong...of course it is. But sometimes a person does it so they find someone in the world who loves or respects them or more importantly fills a void that is felt. Oftentimes if the marriage is strong the person who has been cheated on knows what caused the problem and trusts that they can change along with the cheater.

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  • AmberP
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    I am going to tell you my own personal experience here. I am now living with the guy that i have known for 18 years, we have been "messing around" for about 10 years. Up until about a year and a half ago he lived anywhere from 3-5 hours away. We always knew that we wanted to be together at some time, but we never fully committed until recently. He "cheated" on me a few times, and i "cheated" on him a few times.

    It's a hard relationship to explain, we were both young 10 years ago, we didn't want to be tied down to one person, now that we are both 27 and 28, we are ready for a serious commitment and we are also ready to be with only eachother.

    I guess in a situation like this you would realize that a person living that far away that you have known since you were 10 is going to want to try to have other relationships, and if you are meant to be together then in time you will know it. That's what happend to me. I tried other relationships, i have 3 kids that aren't his, but always in my heart was him, so no other relationships worked out. He has no kids, but no other relationships worked for him either because i was always in his heart too.

    I forgave him for the past, he forgave me for the past. But if he were to cheat on me now that we are living together, or i was to cheat on him, NO there would be no forgiveness. We have both had that time to make shure that this is what we want, if we screw it up, there will be no going back.

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  • KC
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    Well, to be honest I don't think I could ever forgive a partner for cheating on me. And I don't think i'd want to be with him either, I wouldn't be able to trust him again.

    Having said that though, it would depend on my relationship with him - how long we'd been together, whether were married, had children etc. It's also a situation you can't really comment on until you're in it yourself I think.

    Interesting question though. What's your opinion?

    ETA: Yes sorry, i've not had an answer for your questions before as such but found them interesting :)

    I've not been cheated on (as far as i'm aware) before, but I know the feeling of not being good enough.

    If someone doesn't ask for a second chance, how are you supposed to give one? You can't, basically. So everyone who says "you should always give a second chance" don't really think of situations like that I guess.

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  • My ex-partner cheated on me with 3 women when I was pregnant with our son, including one the day I gave birth. I found out about 2 of them when our boy was 2 months old - one had the guts to tell me eventually - and after a particularly harrowing time (including being physically sick, I was in hospital already and seriously ill at the time) and some very long chats with him I forgave him, on the proviso that if there were any more he had to tell me then, because I couldn't go through finding out again.

    I was only just 18, and when I came out of hospital I was so hurt I went totally off the rails for a few weeks, was out drinking 3 times a week, snapping at everyone and pushing everyone away. It culminated in me ending up sleeping with one of his mates with a typical 18 year old "2 can play at that game" thought process. Well, I fell pregnant then - I told him straight away, he knew the baby may not be his, but he also knew he couldn't not forgive me.

    We stayed together until my second son was 4 months old, by which time I just wasn't happy with him anymore - and eventually someone told me about the 3rd person he'd cheated with when I was pregnant. I was heartbroken, and threw him out. Now both the boys see their dads, we're all civil, and me and the little one's Daddy are very, very slowly seeing if we can be together - it's going well so far.

    I forgave once, and I was still betrayed by dishonesty. I know that he is one of the ones who will never change, and will always cheat on people no matter what. I always believed in second chances before - I gave him that and it was thrown in my face. I could never forgive someone for cheating again now, it hurt too much, and now I'm the one left alone with 2 kids under 2, when I'm only 20. All because I loved him too much :(

    I think that the decision to forgive is an absolutely individual one, but personally I would tell every person that ever found that a partner had cheated to cut a run. The risk of being hurt even more just isn't worth it when there are some people out there that will treat them the way they deserve.

    Source(s): The person who said that something was lacking in the relationship is sadly mistaken - I will agree that sometimes that is the case, but certainly with me, even he will admit that it was pure ego-boost and because he could that he cheated. He had everything he ever wanted with me and still it wasn't enough.
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  • 1 decade ago

    This is not a subject that can be covered with a single answer. I would say it really depends on what was in the mind of the cheater?

    First do they have a mental illness, especially one that was not being treated properly at he time?

    Next did they plan it, or was it a "mistake"?

    Next did they try to hide it from you?

    Check out the link in the source list, review the information and see if you can find your situation there. wish you the best of everything, good luck and may God bless you.

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  • Amber
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    Under no circumstances could cheating be forgiven. There are no excuses either such as drunkenness, depression, etc. Cheating is the highest form of disrespect and even if u could forgive the person u could never trust them again and without trust u don't have much.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    ive thought about this before. i reckon i would forgive a partner if i found out he cheated on me once or twice EARLY DAYS, but not once we were serious. at that point i would be so devastated i would want to die, because it would be like a dagger in my heart. id also want to know who he did it with, if i knew her, i would throttle her.

    all of us are in the same boat. we love our men, and men (and some women as well) tend to cheat because the opportunity is always around. but what is worse sometimes is simply fearing they are or will, when they arent or won't.

    how many hours do each of you spend worrying about this whether or not its actually happening?

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  • 1 decade ago

    My husband cheated on me for seven months, got a text from the women claiming to be his girlfriend. It then all came out and he has chosen to be with her. It hurts like hell to be dropped for a girl 16 years your junior, can not compete with her. I know i should hate him but we been together for 24 years and i love him so much, can forgive him for the sex because it was put on a plate for him and he took it. It is the lying that is getting to me ,can i trust him again, would take him back in a minute thou which is mad but you do not know how u would react till it happens to u, this only happened a few weeks ago so still raw, its broken me and my kids , i know a deserve better but its hard to walk away

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